Daily Point of Light # 2701 Jun 11, 2004

BlueAngel Community Outreach is the name of the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) community outreach program, which encompasses employee volunteerism as well as employee and corporate giving. As a health insurer serving only Rhode Island, we focus our volunteer activities on health-related projects that specifically benefit people in our state. Our BlueAngel program is centered on several core projects and included many more individual activities.

Every April, Rebuilding Together matches teams of volunteers with local families, schools, and nonprofit organizations whose homes or building are in need of repair. BCBSRI has sponsored one or more locations each year for nine years, providing supplies and volunteers to transform these building into better places to live and work. In 2002, 181 BCBSRI volunteers renovated the Holy Ghost School in Providence.

The American Heart Walk is the American Heart Association’s major annual fundraising event. BCBSRI President and CEO, Ronald Battista, was the chairman of the event committee in 2002 and 2003, and in 2002, the BCBSRI team included more than 500 volunteer walked who helped raise more than $60,000.

BCBSRI has “adopted” West Broadway Elementary School, a nearby school that serves many children from low-income families. BCBSRI works with school administrators to design activities for the students that are educational, such as an annual health fair and the school newsletter, as well as activities that are just for fun, such as an annual Ice Cream Day. BCBSRI employees are conducting Project Cover-up, a program that provides a hat and mittens for every student in the school each year.

Good health is a basic need shared by everyone. BCBSRI recognizes that due to a variety of circumstances, some of which are preventable, not everyone enjoys good health. BCBSRI believes this is a serious problem that must be address, and thus prioritizes the major health issues using data from the Centers for Disease Control and the local Department of Health. Nearly all of BCBSRI’s employee volunteer activities are focused on health-related projects.